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Kate de MedeirosKate de Medeiros, PhD, MS

Kate de Medeiros is Associate Professor of Gerontology in the Department of Sociology and Gerontology at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. Her research includes narrative approaches to understanding the experience of older age, friendships among people with dementia, and environments and aging. Her book, Narrative Gerontology in Research and Practice was published in 2014.

 KKelly Niles-Yokumelly Niles-Yokum, PhD, MPA

Kelly Niles-Yokum, MPA, PhD. graduated from the program in 2006 with a concentration in aging policy. Her dissertation was titled, "Older Adults and Consumer-Direction: Factors That Play a Role in Choice and Control." She is currently the Director of the Master’s in Gerontology Program and associate professor at the University of La Verne in La Verne, CA. She is the Managing Editor of the peer-reviewed, internationally recognized journal, Gerontology and Geriatrics Education.

Van_Dussen_DanDaniel Van Dussen, PhD, MA

Dan serves as an Associate Professor and Director of Gerontology at Youngstown State University.  His research interests are in the social determinants of recovery from illness, depression, social support, and gerontology education.  Recent publications involve the topics of hospice and palliative care, depression, and social support.  Dr. Van Dussen is the Policy Chair and board member of the Ohio Association of Gerontology in Education.  Dr. Van Dussen serves on the Academic Program Development Committee for the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education.

 Jian YYe_Jiane, MD, PhD

Jian Ye graduated December 2006 after defending her dissertation on, “Access to Care and Functional Change Among Aged Medicare Beneficiaries with Parkinson’s Disease: A multilevel analysis”. After graduation, she worked as an epidemiologist for the World Bank Group, Pfizer and AstraZeneca. She is currently Director, Clinical Safety Physician, Oncology at Merck.

 ‌QSamus-Quincyuincy Samus, PhD, MS

Quincy Samus graduated May 2007. Her dissertation was on, "Differentiated Patterns and Determinants of Functional Dependency in Assisted Living Residents with and without Dementia." Along with her PhD in Gerontology Quincy earned an MS in Epidemiology. Dr. Quincy Samus, an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, is an applied gerontologist, trained in epidemiology and health services research. Her research focuses on quality of care and delivery of health services to older adults and families affected by mental health conditions, primarily dementia, living in community and residential care settings.  She also directs the Translational Aging Services Core (TASC) which aims to support the conceptualization, evaluation and implementation of innovative, evidence-based practices that address the diverse needs of older adults with mental health conditions, their families, and caregivers. The overarching goal of her work is to improve care quality and outcomes through translation of evidence-based practices to real world settings.

  Tolea_MagdaMagda Tolea, PhD, MS

Magda Tolea is currently a Research Assistant Professor of Integrated Medical Sciences at Florida Atlantic University’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine where she conducts research focused on physical correlates of cognitive aging. She is also a senior research mentor in the undergraduate medical and internal medicine residency training programs. Magda graduated in 2007 with her PhD and a dual-degree in epidemiology.

  Rubin_AndreaAndrea Rubin, PhD, MSW

Andrea Rubin is currently working at Maryland Department of Aging in the Department of Housing (waiver services). She graduated in December 2006 after defending her dissertation, "Keeping the Back Door Closed: Barriers to Community Reintegration for Working Age and Older Adults with Disabilities." 

Andersen_DanielDaniel Andersen, Ph.D., M.S., M.P.H.

Dan Andersen, Ph.D., M.S., M.P.H., graduated May 2008 after defending his dissertation, "Frailty in Older Hip Fracture Patients" and also earnging a dual-degree in epidemiology. After graduation, Dan completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Injury Prevention and Trauma Response at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. He also worked at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and was a Senior Research Associate at IMPAQ International. He is currently a Program Manager at Lantana Consulting Group.

 Perron_RebeccaRebecca Perron, PhD, MPH

Rebecca Perron is a Senior Research Advisor in the AARP Research Center. She works on issues related to aging and financial security and older workers. Some of her recent research topics include long-term unemployment among older workers and Social Security planning perspectives of future beneficiaries and financial planners. Rebecca also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Middlebury College, a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her dissertation (2008) is entitled Determining Predictors of Nursing Home Admission and Sub-Populations of Skilled Nursing Facility Residents Using the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS). Prior to working at AARP, Ms Perron held research/intern positions at Westat, the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and as a National Academy of Social Insurance-Somers Long-Term Care intern. She also volunteers and serves on the board of directors at her local Council on Aging.

  Ayd_Simpson_LorettaLoretta Ayd-Simpson, PhD

Loretta Ayd-Simpson graduated in December 2008. Her dissertation was titled, "Neighborhood Stressors and Health Disparities: Is Allostatic Load the Missing Link?"


Schmidt_JoannaJoanna Schmidt, PhD, MS

Joanna Schmidt graduated in May 2009. She is currently a Data Analyst at Integrity Management Services, LLC (IMS). This is a health care consulting firm in the Washington D.C. area, a subsidiary of Strategic Management Systems, Inc., specializing in assisting government organizations detect fraud and abuse in their programs. Joanna analyzes Medicare and Medicaid health care claims data through multivariate methods to detect fraud and abuse in within various aspects of Medicare including both Part A and Part B. In addition, she conducts sampling and projections for investigations into fraud for a Zone Program Integrity Contractor.

 Demichele_KimKim DeMichele, PhD

Kim DeMichele graduated in December 2009. Since January 2008, she has worked as an analyst at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, most recently with the Division of Consumer Assessment & Plan Performance in the Medicare Drug Benefit and C & D Data Group. Kim is currently the government task leader for the Medicare Health Outcomes Survey, which provides longitudinal data on the physical and mental health statuses of beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare managed care plans.

Kang_SunnySunny Kang, PhD, MS, MPA

Sunny graduated in 2009 with her PhD and an MS in epidemiology after defending her dissertation, "Racial Disparities in Nursing Home Quality of Care: A Comparison of Black and White residents Using the 2004 NNHS Data." Sunny's first position was a  tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Sciences and Administration at the University of Michigan – Flint. She is currently an Assistant Professor, School of Health and Human Services, at the University of Baltimore.


‌Maria-ThOkafor_Mariaeresa C. Okafor, PhD, MA

Maria-Theresa C. Okafor graduated July 2010.Her dissertation was on "Effects of Acculturation on Health Outcomes for African Immigrant, Adults." Maria is currently a Research Associate at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.


  IsrCross_Israelael Cross, PhD, MA

Israel Cross graduated in August 2010. He is a Lieutenant in the Unites States Public Health Service and serves as an analyst in the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.  His current work focuses on program monitoring, methodology development in quality reporting programs, and quality reporting outreach across various care settings. 

  Fogler_SarahSarah Fogler, PhD, MA

Sarah Fogler graduated in August 2010. Her first position was a health insurance specialist at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in Baltimore, MD, where she works to develop and implement health care policies relevant to the aged and individuals with disabilities.  Sarah is now the Senior Director of Population Health, Planning & Business Development, GBMC

Giuriceo_Katherine Katherine Giuriceo, PhD, MSW, MA

Katherine Giuriceo graduated in May 2011, including a dual-degree in applied sociology. Prior to graduation she worked at the Project Director for the Baltimore Experience Corps Study at the Center on Aging and Health (COAH) at Johns Hopkins University where she managed the research and operational activities of the research trial. Currently she is working as a Research Analyst at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) in the Rapid-Cycle Evaluation Group (REG). In addition to intramural research projects Katherine works as part of the evaluation team on several CMMI demonstration projects. 

 Piggee_TommyTommy Piggee, PhD, MA

Tommy Piggee, a 2011 graduate of the UMBC/UMC GERO Program is currently a research scientist at AQE Solutions, Largo, MD. Dr. Piggee’s focus is on health wellness and chronic disease management of individuals across the life span. He is presently participating in evaluation of select HIV/AIDS Programs in Maryland. 

SarahCanham_Sarah Canham, PhD, MA

Sarah Canham is a University Research Associate at the Gerontology Research Centre and Sessional Instructor in the Department of Gerontology at Simon Fraser University (Vancouver, BC). She is the convener of the Aging, Alcohol, and Addictions Interest Group with the Gerontological Association of America (GSA) and co-coordinates the service event, Gerontologists Giving Back at the annual GSA meeting. Sarah's dissertation titled, " The Experience of Benzodiazepine Dependence Among Older Women: A Cultural Analysis" was funded by a Ruth L. Kirschstein NRSA Individual Predoctoral Fellowship from the National Institutes on Drug Abuse. Her research interests include mental health, substance abuse, sleep problems, loneliness, and social isolation in later life.

 Marx_KatherineKatherine Marx, PhD, MA

Dr. Marx is the Sr. Research Program Coordinator at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing’s Center for Innovative Care in Aging. The current research studies she is working on are examining innovative solutions for dealing with behavioral issues in persons with dementia and home safety in older Latinos. Additionally, Dr. Marx is adjunct faculty with the University of Maryland, University College and teaches several courses in the Gerontology department. Dr. Marx has her doctorate in Gerontology from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and a Master’s in Public Health with a concentration in Health Education. The topic of her dissertation was Older Men’s Knowledge of Osteoporosis by Race and Risk Factors. She also earned a dual-degree in applied sociology. Her research interests include caregiving, health promotion, and senior housing.

 Ballew_ShoshanaShoshana Ballew, PhD

Shoshana Ballew, PhD, is a Research Associate at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, mainly working with a large international consortium of studies addressing critical questions related to chronic kidney disease prognosis. She has also begun working with a sister international consortium regarding diabetes prognosis. Dr. Ballew is an Associate faculty member at the Welch Center for Prevention, Epidemiology, and Clinical Research as well as the Assistant Program Director for the Johns Hopkins Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology Training grant.

Clark_Shirley_LeanneLeanne Clark-Shirley, PhD, MGS

Leanne Clark-Shirley, Ph.D., is a Senior Research Advisor at AARP. Her past positions included being a Research Associate at IMPAQ International (Columbia, MD) conducting aging, health, and long-term care policy analysis and program evaluation and a Research Specialist at the University of Hawaii Center on Aging. Her work included conducting a program evaluation of Hawaii’s Adult Protective Services system. For her dissertation, "Effects of Informal Caregiving on Critical Care Registered Nurses' Work Outcomes", she designed and administered a web-based survey to over 800 RNs. Leanne is active in the Gerontological Society of America (GSA), and together with Sarah Canham, Ph.D., has organized special community service events at the conference since 2008.

 Doyle_PatrickPatrick J. Doyle, Ph.D., MA

Patrick J. Doyle, Ph.D. graduated in August 2012. Patrick now works  His research focuses on person-centered care, environments and aging, long-term care, and dementia caregiving. Patrick has joined Brightview Senior Living as Director of Memory Care Services at Brightview’s Home Office in Baltimore, Maryland. A skilled and experienced researcher and educator in the field of gerontology and dementia care, Dr. Doyle will work with associates of Wellspring Village®, Brightview’s specialized program and environment for people with dementia and other forms of memory impairment.  

 JennLloyd_Jenniferifer Lloyd, PhD, MS

Jennifer Lloyd defended her dissertation, "Bone Mineral Density and Hip Fracture by Body Mass Index" and graduated in May 2013 along with her dual-degree in epidemiology. She currently works as a Social Science Research Analyst for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation in the Research and Rapid Cycle Evaluation group.

  Hannum_SusanSusan Hannum, PhD, MA

Susan came to the UMB/UMBC Doctoral Program in Gerontology after working at Thomas Jefferson University's Center for Applied Research on Aging and Health. After beginning her doctoral studies in 2007, Susan engaged in several qualitative research projects in conjunction with her mentor, Dr. Robert Rubinstein. It was this early exposure to research in the areas of suffering, illness, generativity, and medical anthropology, and gerontology that would later influence Susan to pursue her own research agenda around the experiences of cancer among older adults. Her dissertation in this area was supported by the R36 dissertation grant mechanism from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. In 2013, upon graduation, Susan began a postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Epidemiology, Prevention, and Control at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is currently researching a variety of issues around cancer survivorship and survivorship care planning.

  Peeples_AmandaAmanda Peeples, PhD, MA

Amanda Peeples graduated in August 2013. Her dissertation research was an ethnographic examination of stigma and social relations of residents of a dementia care unit. Dr. Peeples worked as an ethnographer and project coordinator at UMBC’s Center for Aging Studies before accepting her current position. As the Qualitative Director at MIRECC, Dr. Peeples is charged with developing the newly-established qualitative and mixed methods research unit. She provides guidance, training, and assistance to MIRECC investigators and research staff in conducting qualitative and mixed methods data collection and analysis. She is also pursuing a research program with a focus on the needs and experiences of older Veterans with serious mental illness.

 Simon_Schreck_JanetJanet Simon-Schreck, PhD, MS

Janet is the  Associate Vice Provost for Education and Accreditation Liaison Officer at The Johns Hopkins University. Previously she served as the chief administrative office for the Loyola Clinical Centers, an interprofessional graduate training center. A licensed and certified speech-language pathologist, Janet’s dissertation utilized mixed-methods to explore marital satisfaction in spouses of patients with chronic aphasia. Janet presents nationally on the topic of prevention, assessment, and treatment of cognitive-communication disorders in older adults. She is the appointed coordinator for Special Interest Group 15: Gerontology in the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (ASHA) and a fellow and chair of the Speech-Language Pathology in the National Academies of Practice (NAP). In both positions, she advocates for health care policy reform that will improve the quality of lives for older adults. She also serves as a Speech-Language Pathology expert witness in federal Medicare false claim suits.

 Reider_LisaLisa Reider, PhD, MHS

Lisa Reider, MHS, is an Assistant Scientist in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH), Department of Health Policy and Management. She has experience and expertise in coordinating multi-center interdisciplinary research studies. Currently she serves as Director of Protocol Development and Implementation within the coordinating center for an orthopaedic trauma research consortium. Her research interests include musculoskeletal health, osteoporotic fracture and rehabilitation in older adults in addition to improving the quality of their health care.

Chiles_NancyNancy Chiles Shaffer, PhD, MS

Dr. Nancy Chiles Shaffer joined the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute on Aging as a Postdoctoral fellow in October 2014 after earning her PhD and dual-degree in epidemiology. Her research interests include body composition, physical function, mobility disability, and health disparities. Her doctoral dissertation examined the effect of sarcopenia, age-associated decreases in muscle, and peripheral nerve function on gait speed among older adults with and without diabetes. She also investigated whether these relationships differed by race and gender. At NIA, she is currently investigating the impact of changes in body mass and muscle on physical performance in multiple longitudinal studies, as well as health disparities in physical performance over time.

Mcmullen_TaraTara McMullen, PhD, MPH

Tara McMullen, PhD, MPH is an analyst for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services in the Division of Chronic & Post-Acute Care. Tara leads the measure work for standardized, cross-setting quality measures under the IMPACT Act of 2014. Tara also assists as measure lead for the Nursing Home Quality Initiative and the Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program. Tara’s dissertation research focused on establishing and expanding a scope of practice for Certified Nurse Aides who work in nursing facility settings. Tara graduated from the Gerontology Doctoral Program in 2014 with a concentration in policy.

 Lilly_FlaviusFlavius Lilly, PhD, MPH

Flavius is the Senior Associate Dean, Graduate School at University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB). His research interests are in examining the physical environments and social inequalities of neighborhoods and their affect on the health and wellbeing of people as they age.


Girling_LauraLaura Girling, PhD, MS

Laura Girling is currently a post-doctoral fellow in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Division of Gerontology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Previously she was a Research Scientist in the Center for Aging Studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Her research interests include memory disorders, dementia care, diabetes, qualitative analysis, and neuropsychological assessment She graduated in December 2015. Her dissertation is entitled, "The Conceptualization of Disease Control among Older Adults with Type II Diabetes."

 Miescier_LynnLynn Miescier, PhD, MHA

Lynn graduated in December 2015. Her dissertation was on "Advance care planning and family structure in late life." She works as a social scientist in the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). In addition to intramural research on hospice and long-term care, she works as part of the group evaluating new models in clinical care, community health, and payment and services delivery.

 Smith_CristanCristan Smith, PhD, MA

Cristan is a post-doctoral fellow in the Drug Dependence and Epidemiology Trainee Program at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She graduated in May 2016 after defending her dissertation, "Lifetime Drug Use and Mental and Physical Health at and Beyond Midlife."

Johnson_RasheedaRasheeda Johnson, PhD

After graduation, Rasheeda will remain in the Maryland area as she currently works as a health insurance specialist and analyst at the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services.  In this capacity she works with the CMS Innovation Center to prepare policy and test health care and delivery models. She defended her dissertaion, "Effects of Limb Length Discrepancy on Functional and Health-Related Outcomes in Hip Fracture Patients," and graduated in May 2016.

  Dai_Ming_LingMingliang Dai, PhD, MA

Ming graduated in December 2016. His dissertation is entitled, "Impact of Family Structure and Household Composition on Receipt of Caregiving, Trajectories of Disability, Hospital Discharge Destination and Risk of Readmission among Community-Dwelling Older Adults with Disabilites." He is a Health Services Researcher for the American Board of Family Medicine.

Oconnor-ShannonShannon O'Connor, PhD, MA

Shannon is currently a Social Service Reearch Analyst at CMS in the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation. She graduated in December 2016. Her disseration was on, "Race and socioeconomic status as predictors of utilization and need for total knee arthroplasty for osteoarthritis: Data from the OsteoArthritis Initiative study."

Xu_Jing‌Jing Xu, PhD, MA

Jing graduated in December 2016. Her disseration was, "The Patient-Centered Medical Home, Healthcare Utilization, and Expenditures for Older Adults with Cancer: A Quantitative Analysis". Jing is now a Senior Research Associate at KNG Health Consulting. The projects are closely related to health economics and policy, Medicare payment reform, long-term care, and populations with chronic conditions.

  Howard-Doering-JenniferJennifer Howard Doering, PhD, MSW, MPP

Jennifer is a researcher with over ten years of experience as an advocate and policy analyst focusing on supports and services for older adults and adults with disabilities. Her research interests are in Medicare and Medicaid duel-eligibility policy, national LTSS rebalancing efforts, LTSS initiatives for special populations, and aging with a disability. Her dissertation is examining aging with a disability from the individual’s perspective. Jennifer is currently a Research Public Health Analyst at RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC.

 Couser_ElizabethElizabeth Couser, PhD, MSW

Elizabeth’s research is focused in neuro-ophthalmology and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). She is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Wilmer Eye Institute of Johns Hopkins in the Swenor Research Group (PI: Bonnie Swenor, PhD). She is involved in two projects under the Eye Determinants of Cognition (EyeDOC) Study (PI: Ali Abraham, PhD). EyeDOC is an ancillary study of the ARIC Study. In the first project, the goal is the feasibility of retinal imaging in a community-dwelling older adult population, in both cognitively normal and mild cognitively impaired participants. They aim to determine what characteristics (i.e., cognitive, physical, behavioral) contribute to (or impede) successful retinal imaging. In the second project, the goal is the associations between visual function (acuity, contrast sensitivity) and cognitive outcomes (MMSE) in the same community-dwelling older adult population.